100 Presentation Tips

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100-Presentation-TipsThere are many presentation tips floating around the internet today.  Some are great.  Some are terrible.  They commonly have only 5 or 10, so I decided to wrack my brain to come up with as many tips as I could to help you start rethinking how you’re currently presenting.

I commonly break my effective presenting training sessions down to three sections – Preparation, Design, and Delivery.  Preparation isn’t just limited to “before you start anything.”  It includes preparation before the design and also before the delivery.  Design isn’t limited to just PowerPoint or Keynote either.

Some tips are linked to other posts that explain the concepts further.  This should help, since I tried to keep the tips short and easily consumable.

It’s not exhaustive, nor is it meant to be.  If you have more to add, just let me know in the comments section!

Per request, the tips are now available as a PDF.  A big thanks to Matthew for converting it.  As more tips are submitted by readers, I’ll try to keep updating the PDF.

PREPARATION

DESIGN

DELIVERY

  • Arrive EARLY
  • Purchase your own equipment if possible
  • Bring an extra extension cord
  • Test your equipment, then test it again
  • Bring your presentation on multiple mediums (computer, USB, etc)
  • Use extra time to meet, greet, and create allies
  • Place your monitor in between you and the audience
  • Keep your introduction focused
  • Encourage conversations and involve your audience
  • Answer and encourage questions whenever possible
  • Ask your own questions
  • Be aware of your time, and respectful of your audience’s time
  • When in doubt, shorter is better
  • Love your audience
  • Remember, we all make mistakesALL of us
  • Use a wireless presentation remote – I use the Kensington 33374
  • Use the B key to blank the slide
  • Make eye contact
  • Be passionate or don’t be there period
  • Be confident
  • Remove barriers between you and your audience
  • Enter the audience’s space if you can (but not too often)
  • Always be honest – a lie can be a disaster
  • Fear is natural – accept it and move on
  • NEVER read your slides
  • Actually conclude your presentation with a summary
  • Don’t be timid – You won’t be rewarded for it
  • Don’t underestimate yourself
  • Videotape yourself and watch later
  • Bring your emotion (but don’t get too emotional)
  • Use a laser instead of your arm (remotes have them)
  • Don’t blame it on your PowerPoint – good or bad, you designed it
  • When virtually presenting, shut off all other programs
  • When virtually presenting, have a partner run the technical portion
  • Use visual aids other than PowerPoint, like easels, props, and skits
  • Use humor, but be careful!  A bad joke can ruin everything
  • Remember, you are ALWAYS presenting
  • Never sell – if you don’t know what I mean, then you’re doing it wrong
  • Always give them what they paid for, even if they didn’t pay anything
  • Stay afterward to have personal conversations.  These can be very valuable

USER CONTRIBUTED (continually updated)

  • Reflect on other presentations (Reinhardt A Botha)
  • Use language that is concise, clear, and to the point (Anke Tröder)
  • Don’t use buzzwords, jargon, or clichés (Anke Tröder)
  • Use examples (Anke Tröder)
  • Remember, the presentation is about and for your audience. It is not about you. (Jeff Hurt)
  • There are no “rules.”  Do what works for you! (Simon)

There you go – 100+ Presentation Tips.  I’m sure we could fill this post with 100 more, so keep adding them in the comments!

Image courtesy of Leo Reynolds on Flickr

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  • Arnaud Pellissier

    Great list! Big reminder of everyday tips to tweak our transmission of information.

    At one moment you wrote “There is no minimum font size”. Did you mean “there is no maximum font size (insert Hulk here)” ?

  • Tripp

    Tip-Stories are in our DNA and should permeate your presentation